September 9, 2008

No Reception and Prophets

Yesterday was an experience, or lack there of. I was invited to participate in a day of prayer and fasting with some local pastors. It involved silence, praising, God's word and teaching. The day was an awesome day of people using the gifts of the spirit in the way that God has designed. Encouragement, speaking in tongues, prophesying, teaching... it was absolutely amazing.

The only bad part was..., I seemed to be getting absolutely no reception at all from God. No matter how hard I tried, thought about, praised, listened, or concentrated, it was like I was watching from the outside. I really wanted to participate in the spirit as God was moving. I felt like a shell of a man. I could hear everything, see everything, and understand that God was moving in a way that I wanted to be part of. But I couldn't. It was so frustrating. It was like God was staring in my face, and I couldn't respond.

I can tell you that I witnessed the Body of Christ, reaching across barriers of denomination, to share in the gifts of the spirit, and I am so glad I was there to at least see it. To see God manifested in that way, makes me want to see it again.

In this group were two prophets that made me see how God uses, and speaks to, and gives visions to. They were very distinct in the way God used them. One prophet taught from the Word of God and brought the Word alive. He had great teachings for the entire group and to lead in a particular direction. The other had a word of God for particular individuals.

I have believed and studies for the past couple of years that God has given me the gift of prophecy, knowing that God does give me His Word for certain places and times. I can say that being a fly on the wall during this time was difficult, but gave me great encouragement, and insight into being a prophet. God is awesome.

I do not believe that I have ever encountered a Prophet that spoke the Word of God to individuals like I did here. I know that he was real and true because he spoke what I knew needed to be heard for 3 other people that I knew that were there, and then he gave me a message, which was my life story from scripture for the past year and a half. I can tell you that he preached the exact same message, that I have given numerous times, about Peter walking on water right back to me. He didn't know me at all. Not even my name, let alone what God was doing in my life.

I have always told myself, and others, that God still uses and gives all the gifts that were used in the Bible. But if I am totally honest with myself,I am not sure if I really believed that God still used Prophets for particular people and times..., until today. I always have questioned if what I see on TV and other things, if they are real. I can tell you today, whether or not it is true on TV, that God is still speaking to people and giving the gift of prophesy for particular people and time. This actually opens up more than speaking the word, but for me travels into healing, raising from the dead, miracles. It showed me the power of God, and realistically, the possibility for what God could be preparing in me.

I believe as Peter walked on water, he did so because the he experienced and saw Jesus do it first. The adventure was there and Peter wanted to join in. I believe God has shown me an adventure and gave me a glimpse into what actually can happen. I don't believe that means that I am going to be given this form of prophecy, but I know it is there, and KNOW God can, which is different... from yesterday.



1 comment:

Ben said...

That sounds cool, man. I've had bad experiences with "prophets" before, but few good ones. I have heard the word of God spoken directly to me through someone else, though, so I'm familiar with the gift of prophecy.

However, in biblical studies, we talk about the prophets more as social critics who called people to justice ("you've neglected the widow and orphan," "you cows of Bashan," and all this). This has made me think about just what it means to be a prophet in the age of the church. Like, were both of the men you heard "prophets," or was one a prophet and the other one gifted with "words of wisdom" or something like that? (Or do the names even matter?)

John (from Revelation) was seen as a prophet because of his visions. Jesus was considered a prophet for a number of things, not least of which was predicting the future. But it seems to me that "prophecy" is speaking the word of God to God's people. I wonder how God's prophets can carve a space for his word in the chatter of our times. If the prophet did speak, would anyone listen or care? It's kind of like the false prophets who argued with Jeremiah (similar situations abound with other prophets): it's so much easier to believe the false prophets preaching happiness than the true prophet preaching a difficult message of repentance.